The Willamette University MBA program facilitates a wide variety of location-based treks and industry-based treks. These treks give us the opportunity to visit different companies and learn more about a company’s culture and employees’ experiences and career paths. In early October, about 25 of us participated in the 2019 Portland Trek hosted by Intel and Nike. Current employees responded to questions that pertained to personal career paths and satisfaction levels in their current positions.
Upon arrival at the Hawthorn Farm Auditorium building at Intel, we were given the opportunity to participate in an informal networking session with current Intel employees over pizza and refreshments.
Terri Savage MBA’06, Finance Data Governance Controller at Intel, and Casey Morgan MBA’13, Chief of Staff and Technical Assistant to GM of Data Center Product Management and Storage, greeted us and shared a little about Intel’s current goals as well as goals pertaining to their specific sector at Intel. A panel consisting of more Willamette MBA alumni as well as employees with over 15 years of dedication to Intel shared their career paths and provided advice for us on how to apply for jobs at Intel. The event closed with a brief networking opportunity.
After Intel, we proceeded to the very extravagant Nike campus where we received a tour courtesy of Dustin Ebel MBA ’17, who currently works as a technical developer at Nike. The tour highlighted Lake Nike, the various buildings (named after athletes and shoes), and showcased the benefits of working at Nike (such as the delicious restaurants).
The panel consisted of current Nike employees, many of whom are Willamette MBA alumni. They answered questions about career paths and the competitive nature of the application process at Nike. The event opened up for networking and concluded at the Decathalon Club Cafe where we and the panelists enjoyed some light dinner appetizers. I was able to connect with Willamette MBA alum Aaron Rapf, the Director of Brand Integration and North America Sports Marketing and arranged an informational conversation with him. Through that conversation, I asked Aaron some questions pertaining to his career path and how I could make myself a competitive marketing candidate post-graduation.
This event gave us an exclusive opportunity to obtain information not found on Intel’s or Nike’s LinkedIn page or website and gain first-hand knowledge regarding employee satisfaction and fit with their companies.